As non-tenure track faculty, my 2015-2016 portfolio is assessed on “teaching.” As part of the labor group in the department retreat this year, we found by surveying adjunct and full-time faculty that all faculty participate in similar percentages of professional development and service, regardless of the obligations to position. This is true for me. Pragmatic professional development enrich my practice. Service experiences are fodder for connecting with my community and with students. We discuss issues we care about and practice critical reflection.
Yesterday, a student sent the message, “You have been super helpful and I want to express that I am grateful for such a wonderful teacher during my first quarter [sic] in college. You are inspirational as well as kind. Thank you for the light you shared.” Inspiration is probably a result of what I talk about as the “matter” of writing. Locally, I volunteer with an animal rescue by fostering a cruelty case, do fundraising/grant writing, as well as writing other materials for the group. I also write Op/Ed publications, sharing the published works with the students. This Spring I have been able to share two Op/Ed articles published in local news. Seeing the teacher in print offers credibility and, students report, encouragement for their own writing.
In keeping with the aim to connect, I ask students about their experience. Students say my course is accessible. In one of the student surveys I collected this year, a majority of students preferred live sessions online over F2F format. They say it is safer to speak online; they get questions answered; and they feel more individual attention. Similarly, we connect in office hours. This semester, my open office hours on Adobe Connect were attended 125 times by students, not counting additional hours offered by appointment nor the incalculable time spent engaging via email and phone.
I engage in online discussions through NCTE, LRNASST, various social media and department-wide email exchanges. I respond to every request I am able, like supplying OER materials, and supplying tutor training material for the ALC. It appears my exchanges are met with some regard. For example, one PhD at another institution requested to use my opinion in her classroom. I am honored that Allison Hewett uses my Live Activity Sessions are for eLearning trainings and that faculty have requested access to lectures and videos. One faculty requested to copy my online 1010 course for summer this year.
Though I have yet to be published academically this year, I.have submitted a proposal to present at NCTE in November 2016 with Stephanie Maenhardt based on student surveys about accessibility and engagement. Self-evaluation is essential to the presentation and my practice. One way is through peer feedback and structured training. I attended online for trainings offered via FTLC and our own department, like the training on Rhetoric and a Canvas course “Myth of Learning Styles.” Also, I am now and have been working for two years to incorporate principles of Universal Design that I learned with Melissa Helquist. Experimenting with accessibility, I have used iPad app Educreations, Canvas-embedded Kaltura with captioning, Screencast-o’matic and audio with captioning, screen capture video of presentations using music and text only, Prezi presentations (recorded as video as well as self-paced), Google Presentations, Google live and collaborative interactions combined with live conferencing in Adobe Connect. Having become proficient in many presentation media and applications, I have also coached other faculty in how to use Adobe Connect and WebEx, and the Canvas media tool.
I work to improve departmental offerings. In one example, I coordinated a meeting for the 1200 course committee via web conference in Fall 2015. There we discussed options for a new text, incorporated new faculty into the rotation of teaching the course, and discussed a course review based on the criteria for articulation. I have been similarly engaged in department-level conversation about Academic Literacy Center design and tutor training. During the retreat, I designed four surveys and composed much of the final document for presentation.The results from our conversation are being realized as teaching teams. I have begun developing my Fall 2016 curriculum, participating with Stephanie Maenhardt and Brittany Stephenson, to be one full-time faculty member supporting a team of adjunct teaching online 1010. Before we complete our transition, I will attend Computers in Writing 2016 conference in Rochester, NY this May where I anticipate making new professional connections for online composition teaching teams and OER in the department.
Given my activity this year, I am confident that my performance exceeds the expectations of my position and submit this document with the linked evidence for your consideration.